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HomePoliticsJohno Lee: My vision for Nottingham East | Conservative Home

Johno Lee: My vision for Nottingham East | Conservative Home

Cllr Johno Lee is the Conservative candidate for Nottingham East and a Newark & Sherwood district councillor.

As I embark on my second campaign for a General Election, I am driven by a renewed commitment to our community and the pressing need for effective representation in Nottingham East. My journey as a councillor has equipped me with invaluable insights into the challenges our city faces, and I am eager to leverage this experience to benefit our constituents and support my fellow Conservatives in reclaiming seats in traditionally Labour strongholds. This campaign is not just about winning; it’s about narrowing the gap between us and Labour, and perhaps even outmaneuvering them amidst a potentially fractured left-wing vote.

Nottingham City Council has been grappling with severe financial troubles, a situation that has put immense pressure on local services and residents alike. The issuance of a Section 114 notice last November was a stark indicator of the council’s inability to balance its budget, a scenario that has far-reaching implications for our community. This financial crisis was precipitated by a combination of factors, including increased demand for social care services, rising homelessness, and the ongoing impact of inflation. The collapse of Robin Hood Energy in 2020 further compounded these challenges, draining resources and undermining public trust in local governance.

Having served on the well-run Nottinghamshire County Council, I have seen first-hand how effective governance can positively impact a community. In contrast, the Labour-run Nottingham City Council has struggled due to poor financial management and questionable decisions. The Robin Hood Energy fiasco is a prime example, where a council-owned company collapsed, leading to significant financial losses and a blow to public confidence. The mismanagement has left the council scrambling for solutions, including requesting Exceptional Financial Support (EFS) from the government.

While this support is crucial, it is not a long-term solution. The council must make significant savings, amounting to over £36 million between 2024/25 and 2027/28, to ensure financial stability. This includes difficult decisions such as reducing staff by over 500 full-time equivalent posts and cutting funding to voluntary and cultural sectors. These measures, though necessary, will undoubtedly impact the quality of services available to our residents. Residents are rightfully concerned that the mismanagement by the Labour-run council could lead to a reduction in key services, affecting their daily lives and well-being.

My experience as a councillor has given me a front-row seat to the complexities of local governance and the critical issues that need addressing. Serving on various committees, including the Children and Families Select Committee and the Health Scrutiny Committee, has provided me with a comprehensive understanding of the needs and challenges of our community. I have been actively involved in initiatives to tackle Blue Badge fraud and improve road safety, demonstrating my commitment to making tangible improvements in our city.

In light of the council’s financial troubles, it is imperative that we adopt a proactive and innovative approach to governance. We must prioritize financial prudence while ensuring that essential services are not compromised. This includes exploring alternative funding models, enhancing operational efficiencies, and fostering partnerships with the private sector and non-profit organizations. My goal is to advocate for policies that promote sustainable development and fiscal responsibility, ensuring that Nottingham East can thrive despite the current financial constraints.

As we navigate these challenging times, it is crucial to maintain a focus on building a resilient and inclusive community. The financial crisis has highlighted the vulnerabilities within our social safety nets, particularly in areas such as social care and housing. We must work collaboratively to address these issues, ensuring that the most vulnerable members of our community receive the support they need.

This includes advocating for better funding for social care services and developing comprehensive strategies to combat homelessness. Additionally, we must invest in education and skills development to empower our residents and create opportunities for economic growth.

I am committed to working tirelessly to represent the interests of Nottingham East and to ensure that our community receives the support and resources it needs. This election is an opportunity to bring about meaningful change, to address the pressing issues facing our city, and to build a brighter future for all residents. I will also be working with other candidates, advising them based on my experience from the last election. It’s essential that we all stay positive, active, and share good practices to ensure as many of us as possible get into Parliament and keep Labour out.

I urge my fellow Conservatives and all residents of Nottingham East to join me in this endeavor. Together, we can overcome the financial challenges, restore trust in local governance, and create a resilient, prosperous community. Your support is crucial in this journey, and I am confident that, with your help, we can achieve our goals and make Nottingham East a model of effective and compassionate governance.

This campaign is about more than just winning an election. It is about making a difference in the lives of our residents and ensuring that Nottingham East has a representative who is dedicated, experienced, and committed to addressing the challenges we face. I look forward to your support and to the opportunity to serve our community with integrity and dedication. Additionally, I will be helping my neighbouring MPs in old red wall seats to keep their seats.

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